Edema Fuludu, a former Head Coach of Warri Wolves on Friday called for severe sanctions as a measure to curb violence in the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL).
Fuludu told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that since payment of fines had not deterred teams from violence, severe sanctions should be meted out to given to defaulters.
NAN reports that since the 2018/2019 season kicked off on Jan. 13, there have been complaints of violence against match officials from Match Day 1 of the season.
“If after all the fines and banishment we can still not guarantee safety of referees, players and coaching crew, then something is fundamentally wrong.
“We need to instill discipline in our fans so that they will understand that their violent acts will not go unpunished, I think if clubs begin to lose points, things will change.
“Take for instance if they lose three points and their fans still continue in the same path, let them lose six points. By so doing, club managers will ensure that they educate their fans.
“Fans will understand that their unruly behaviour will further cost their clubs a great deal so they will shape up. I know for sure, no club like to lose points,’’ he said.
Fuludu, who is also a Match Commissioner, said that the presence of security personnel at match venues could not be overemphasised.
“There is need to have water tight security at match venues. This will send signal to troublesome fans that should they misbehave, they will be taken away.
“Now that Gernot Rohr wants to watch our players playing in the domestic league, violence will not help the growth of the league, fans should know,’’ he said.
Fuludu said that Nigerian referees’ performance is now better than what it used to be.
“Even in the foreign leagues, referees make blunders from time to time but they are sanctioned to keep them in check, ” the ex-international said.